Saturday, January 2, 2010

New to the World of Style

I have discovered a new sort of passion welling up inside of me and it has caught me quite by surprise--I am seriously falling in love with fashion! No, not fashion actually; it's style--really great style.

photo taken from Creole Collection found at
Part of my new style sense has somehow taken on a sort of fascination with ruffles, and sometimes lace. I am drawn to them, they seem to call to me!

I think the most important part of this awakening for me can be understood in part of what Nina Garcia writes in her book "The Little Black Book of Style":

"Confidence is captivating, it is powerful, and it does not fade--and that is endlessly more interesting than beauty.
The first and most important step to developing style is to project this kind of confidence. The kind of confidence that tells others that you respect yourself, love yourself, and dress up for yourself and nobody else. You are your own muse. Style comes from knowing who you are and who you want to be in this world: it does not come from wanting to be somebody else, or wanting to be thinner, shorter, taller, prettier."

She goes on to talk about the really honest value of dressing well, and I, as our dear Rachel explained, "gobbled it up."

(photo taken from Stephmcg's photostream on flickr)
I have discovered in the past week, with my new-found shopping inspiration, how many wonderful pairs of ballet flats are out there, and how hard it can be to choose just one! But that is just how it goes with shoes. I love them.

I have always been the simple and clueless girl who tries to look good but without really knowing how. I never spent too much time or money on my wardrobe because I thought it was vain and superficial. However, I have always recognized the importance of being presentable, clean and cute, appropriate and modest, fashionable and confident in what you wear.

I think my ideas about clothes and fashion started to change a couple years ago when I started having babies. As my body changed so rapidly, my wardrobe had to change too, and deciding what to wear every day was as challenging as the sickness and swelling. Maybe even more challenging at times.

But now something has changed, it's like a switch got flipped inside of me and suddenly I am not only interested in being comfortable or practical, but I am interested in looking good! And when I see something that is really beautiful or unique or just simply classy, I get that excited and giddy kind of feeling inside of me that just wants to shout "Yes! I love it!"

A few months ago I discovered Alabama Chanin. I just loved the unique style and the idea that she started it all from stitching traditions and used t-shirts. It wasn't too long ago that I started to do a little embroidery, and I can really appreciate the kind of workmanship that created these beautiful clothes. So of course, I immediately wanted to not only dress in them, but make them too! So I bought the book--the first of several I have found on my new fashion quest.

 (photo taken from the Shabby Apple website, Sophisticated Collection)

Then I discovered Shabby Apple. I will never be the same (smile, deep sigh). Now every time I shop for dresses, these images appear in my head and nothing I have found on the rack can compare...yet. Okay, maybe I'm being dramatic. But some--not all, but some--of those dresses just sing my name!

I also found this fun blog called Have a Cute Day. Check it out, it's fun.
Actually, I have discovered many great blogs and etsy shops (maybe I'll share more in another post sometime down the road) that my eyes have been opened! It's a new world for me.

Book #2 in my new quest for style is Nina Garcia's Little Black Book of Style. It is a entertaining and easy read, and so full of great advise and explanations. I feel as though I have gone from completely clueless to moderately capable of becoming an intelligent shopper and well-dressed woman.

Photo taken from The Vintage Pearl
One thing I am learning to appreciate more are accessories!

Book #3 is going to be Design it Yourself Clothes. I think my great grandmother's spirit is pulling on my heartstrings--she was a great seamstress and as of late, I am aching to try my hand at this! Maybe someday I can make her proud...

So, I am starting new this year, with a much smaller wardrobe due to a recent weeding and discarding of anything unsuited for the new,  more confident and more stylish me.

I don't really know how much my budget can afford this new passion and desire to shop. And I'm not sure how much time my schedule can afford toward the endeavor. But I am patient. I am confident. And with a little time, I will be stylish too.

Do you have a favorite fashion tip for a girl like me?

1 comment:

  1. i LOVE the vintage style too, but, like you, have a hard time finding it. anthropologie used to carry a lot of it, but that's WAY out of my price range. but urban outfitters is sorta/kinda doable sometimes. also, there's a website called "shop ruche."
    also, around here there's a great second-hand store that only carries items that fit a certain profile--maybe there's something like that in your parts?